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Mistakes doom K's in preseason loss

There are mistakes that have to be cleaned up before the Komets' regular season begins, and there's only one more preseason game to do that.

"I'm excited to get after it tomorrow and put this one behind us, but I think we're headed in a good direction overall," said coach Gary Graham, after the Komets lost 5-2 Friday at Kalamazoo, Mich.

The Komets' goals came from John Dunbar and Chris Auger, who scored on a power play, while Kalamazoo got two goals from Matt Caria and one apiece from Chris Lawrence, Ray Kaunisto and John Armstrong.

Fort Wayne goaltender Cody Reichard stopped 31 of 36 shots.

"I think he played well in spots, but we need to do a better job of supporting him," said Graham who will start John Muse in net Saturday at Memorial Coliseum against the Wheeling Nailers. "The mistakes we made definitely put Cody at a disadvantage. Guys were coming down Broadway on breakaways."

The Komets won their first preseason game Wednesday, scoring three unanswered goals for a 4-3 victory at Wheeling, W.Va.

This time, they couldn't recover from their myriad mistakes.

"We were good in spots," Graham said. "Kalamazoo, you have to give credit where credit is due, they were very opportunistic. When we made a mistake, they made us pay. We had a couple of bad line changes and they made us pay those with a couple of goals."

There was one fight: Fort Wayne's Kyle Bochek fought Ben Wilson.

The regular season opens Oct. 19 against Toledo at the Coliseum.

Justin A. Cohn, pro sports coordinator for The Journal Gazette, has been covering the Fort Wayne Komets since 1997. His reporting includes game stories from home and away, features about the players and personalities associated with the Komets, plus coverage of issues affecting hockey at all levels. A native of Bloomfield Hills, Mich., Cohn graduated from Emory University in Atlanta. He can be reached at 260-461-8429 or by email at jcohn@jg.net.

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